Warriors No Worries.
Monash Warriors 22 Defeated Croydon Rangers 7
A freezing cold and windy wintry day greeted these two rivals. Unfortunately it’s now meant to be Spring and sleet, hail and even snow weren’t part of the deal.
The Warriors were first to kick off the scoring in the 1st qtr, despite some fine defense by the Rangers they managed to get one into the end zone on the ground. The Rangers started a scoring drive at the end of the 1st and continued into the 2nd qtr, that led to their first TD on a run by Rookie RB #40 Will Bendle. They took the lead with a successful XP attempt and by half time were winning 7-6.
After the half it was all Warriors, halting the Rangers Offense from any kind of production. They were able to run in another 2 TD’s in the second half both with successful 2pt conversions and ran out winners.
Raiders Doo Doo Doo Damage.
Northern Raiders 60 Defeated Peninsula Sharks 0
Sharks generally like warmer waters (most species) so this probably had a bearing on the 1st half score of 53-0 that the Raiders put up. It’s the 2nd time a team has put up over 50 points on the newbies in a half.
The Raiders veterans helped pile on the points which gave the back ups much needed experience and playing time. RB #10 Jesse Spiroulos rushed for over 100yd’s and 4 TD’s while “Mr Safe Hands” WR #80 Nicholas faure had 3 TD receptions. DL/OL #56 Kane Taylor also added a TD run to his name from Full Back.
The Sharks showed some good signs once again but they were unable to hold onto possession, fumbling the ball at critical stages but completing some nice passes.
Falcons Freeze Barbarians.
Ballarat Falcons 16 Defeated Monash Barbarians 14
With the sun going down…oh wait, it’s Ballarat, they don’t get sun, well maybe briefly. Anywho, with the weather getting colder and the wind still blowing the Falcons faced up against the Barbarians on a special day for the Ballarat team. Wearing lime green socks to help raise money for Lymphoma awareness, they didn’t start how they would have liked with Barbarians kicking of the scoring just before the end of the 1st qtr. The 2 point conversion was also good, making the score 8-0 in favour of the luckless Barbarians.
The 2nd qtr didn’t produce much as both teams failed to put drives together. The scores remained at 8-0 heading into half time. Players wouldn’t have been blamed if they ran to their cars and warmed up the engine, putting the heater on full to get some warmth and feeling into their bodies. It was COLD!!!
The Falcons opened up the 2nd half with a TD run by converted WR to RB Duncan McIntosh and the 2pt conversion successful, with a pass from QB James Stephens to the ever reliable WR Eddie Carey. The Falcons scored again in the final qtr with a pile pushing run by Rookie RB #9 Rhys McCormack with 9 minutes remaining, the 2pt conversion good again to WR Carey and the lead was theirs 16-8.
The Barbarians were able to move the ball down field and with just over 5 minutes remaining they hit the scoreboard again but the equalising 2pt conversion was no good. In the end the Falcons ran out victors with the Defense putting a halt to the Barbarians Offense.
Buccaneers Beat Up Silverbacks.
Geelong Buccaneers 51 Defeated Pakenham Silverbacks 0
The Buccaneers were probably wondering on their drive down to Clayton South, whether they would be playing a game or facing another forfeit from their opponents. It was good news as the Silverbacks had a full squad for the game, so this game would matter.
Despite having a full team the Silverbacks just weren’t up to the task of beating the Buccaneers. The experience of the Buccs proved too much and they scored at will. Eventually running out 51-0 victors and another loss for Pakenham.
Melbourne University Royals 20 Defeated South Eastern Predators 0
Not only do these 2 clubs have 3 words in their names (Strange Fact), they also both play a very physical brand of football. The team who could rotate more players in and out of the line up faced a better chance of coming out on top. That’s exactly how this battle turned out.
Early on it was a bit of a ground and pound with both teams trying to establish the running game that has been so successful so far. After a scoreless 1st qtr the Royals were able to strike first through the air, something they have struggled a little bit with in some games. QB Alex Franklin hit his favourite target WR Jacob Kerin on a 31yd pass as he walked into the end zone but the conversion failed. Heading towards half time the Predators got the ball moving but a huge goal line stand by the Royals held the Predators out as the time clock hit zero. It wasn’t easy out there and the scored remained 6-0 in favour of the Royals.
The run first game plan of the Predators wasn’t going to work against the Royals who’s run Defense has been a stand out this year so they came out passing it more to open up the running game. Predators WR Bobby Vahos was on the receiving end (pardon the pun) of a few passes. Adjustments made by the Royals Secondary helped limit the damage he was capable of. With the Preds unable to get into the end zone the Royals struck again with another pass from QB Franklin to WR Kerin for 29yds and the 2pt conversion was good. Another goal line stand by the Royals in the final qtr gave them 97yd’s of field to play with if they wanted to score again.
Enter QB Noah Sims into the line up and he ran his way for 76yd’s. A 2yd run gave them 6 more points, putting the game out of the Predators reach. The Royals eventually were able to kneel out the game.
BYE – Croydon Rangers (2nd), Northern Raiders (3rd), Peninsula Sharks (2nd).
|September 22, 2018||Melbourne University v Monash Warriors||2:00 pm||Lakeside Recreation Reserve|
GAME OF THE WEEK.
Another chance for the Royals to knock off the Warriors and show them that they are the new powerhouse, well behind the Crusaders. A replay of the stunning 2017 semi final that the Royals won. The Royals are even better this year and I can see them inflicting a loss on the Warriors.
The Warriors are doing what they need without setting the world on fire. Have they taken a step back or have the other 2 top clubs taken over from them? This game will show us either way.
Prediction – Royals 24 V Warriors 14
|September 22, 2018||Pakenham Silverbacks v Bendigo Dragons||5:30 pm||Lakeside Recreation Reserve|
A home game for the Silverbacks should see player numbers increase or at least have enough for a game.
Against the rested Dragons who were able to move the ball against the Crusaders a couple of weeks back, this could be another ugly scoreline. Let’s hope it’s competitive.
Prediction – Silverbacks 0 V Dragons 44
|September 22, 2018||Geelong Buccaneers v Ballarat Gridiron||2:00 pm||Hendy Street Reserve|
Wild West Bowl? no? ok…..
Geelong so far have disposed of all the former Div 2 clubs and find themselves facing the Falcons, another former Div 2 club. I would like to think the Falcons have a shot but realistically the Buccs are at another level compared to them.
The Falcons might score with their air attack but the running game will struggle against the Buccaneers Defense. They will need to make the most of their opportunities if they wish to cause an upset.
Prediction – Buccaneers 38 V Falcons 8
|September 23, 2018||Western Crusaders v South Eastern Predators||10:30 am||MacPherson Park|
The Crusaders will be fresh from the Bye round and ready to continue where they left off. It will be interesting to see how the running game performs as we know QB Andrew Healy can throw the ball accurately.
The Predators will hope that they can mix up the game plan a bit more so they aren’t as predictable with their power running scheme. Maybe a dump off to the a RB in the flat might work to their advantage? Just can’t see them getting close unfortunately.
Prediction – Crusaders 36 V Predators 8
|September 23, 2018||Melton Wolves v Monash Barbarians||2:00 pm||MacPherson Park|
This game is do or die for the struggling Wolves. With the schedule being changed at short notice for this game, they will find some players are not available. Even their stats man can’t make it and we know what a great reliable guy he is. Can QB David Parkinson lead them to victory?
The Barbarians finally got something going last week and will look to exploit the Wolves in the air. While he isn’t the most mobile of QB’s, Roche does have a deceivingly accurate arm and could hurt them. This will be close.
Will we have our first draw?
Prediction – Wolves 14 V Barbarians 14